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Irish Cancer Society – Taking Life Back From Cancer

8 March 2024

The purpose of the research and brand strategy was to redefine the Irish Cancer Society (ICS) brand and communications approach

The purpose of the research and brand strategy was to redefine the Irish Cancer Society (ICS) brand and communications approach so it can be a valuable tool in enabling the ICS to support its community through fundraising, service provision, research & advocacy. It is 2021, mid COVID crisis in Ireland. The most vulnerable people in the healthcare system, cancer patients and their families are desperately seeking support from Irish Cancer Society and other voluntary organisations to help them to understand and navigate this completely new context. Fundraising was severely curtailed and was leading to an existential crisis - the lack of fundraising opportunities was undermining the relevance of the organisation, which led to a lack of fundraising… MCCP were commissioned to deep dive into existing quantitative research and conduct qualitative IDI’s and focus groups with volunteers and service users. At its core ICS was identified more as the category of cancer, rather than as the lead NGO in the space. Size, scale and tenure meant the ICS brand had ‘become wallpaper’ and was more identified as a fundraising vehicle – Daffodil Day – rather than as a ‘community of impact’, a collective of survivors and supporters dedicated to eliminating cancer. The research drove a new brand positioning ‘taking life back from cancer’ and supporting communications which led to ICS’s greatest fundraising ever and a compelling new relevance for the organisation across advocacy, service provision and cancer research, truly ‘taking life back from cancer’.

‘This project has resulted in a fundamental transformation in how ICS communicates – not just our message - but also in how we value communications as a discipline. The thoroughness and quality of MCCP’s insight has emphasised the importance of understanding our various audiences’ needs, wants and underlying motivations and how they can play a pivotal role in fundraising, advocacy, research and service provision, there is no ‘one size fits all’ message for ICS. MCCP were an integral partner to ICS through this project and this work will influence and shape the our communications approach for many years to come.’

Fionnuala O'Leary, Director of Engagement and Fundraising, Irish Cancer Society

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